PhD Candidate, Chinese
Faculty advisor: Mark Meulenbeld, Associate Professor, East Asian Languages and Literature
Aaron Reich is a PhD student in the Department of East Asian Languages and Literature at the University of Wisconsin–Madison studying Chinese religions and religious art. His research focuses on the visual culture of Daoism during late imperial and modern periods. In its preliminary stages, Aaron’s dissertation examines the dynamic between iconographic convention and ritual efficacy. Outside of China, Aaron’s teaching interests include many global and theoretical topics, such as religion and material and visual culture; ritual and semiotics; and relationships between religion, aesthetics, and self-expression. Aaron holds M.A. degrees in Art History, Chinese, and Asian Religions, and his current and past projects explore the transdisciplinary overlaps between these three fields. Since 2007, he has worked as a research and technical assistant for the Daoist Iconography Project, an international research database for the study of representations of the Daoist pantheon and the function of these images in ritual contexts. In the fall of 2015, Aaron is leading two discussion sections as the teaching assistant for Asian Religions at UW–Madison. Aaron is also Editorial Assistant for the journal Chinese Literature: Essays, Articles, and Reviews (CLEAR).